Palermo & surroundings/Palermo e dintorni

Date: 25th April – 4th May
Duration: 9 days
Travelling by: airplane, ferry boat and car.

My husband has many friends and relatives who live in Palermo or that live around Europe but belong to Palermo. So why don’t enjoy this long weekend and go to visit them…

Here we are travelling a bit with our two young girls!

Our favourite places:

1- Mondello: the most popular Palermo’s seaside.

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Mondello's village
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Modello's beach

What to do:
– play, build sand castles and run on the beautiful sandy beach, just before the setting up of the umbrellas for the summer. If you are strong enough you can go swimming in the fresh crystal water 😉

Where to eat:
– eat a wonderful Granita in one of the bars in the main plaza
– enjoy an aperitiv on the beach at the “Ombelico del Mondo” Bar with some slides for children or at the “Mida Bar Beach Club” nearby the Bagni Valdesi with a good restaurant

2- Sferracavallo: a small fishermen borgo close to Mondello

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Beautiful sunset at Sferracavallo

What to do:
– walk and enjoy the view of the sea along the seaside promenade
– taste the typical “pane & panelle” sandwich or a great ice-cream

3- Palermo’s City Center

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Palermo's narrow streets

What to do:
– Hang out in the city center by foot or with the typical “calesse” and admire the beautiful historical buildings with all their contradictions.

What to see, among the others:
– The Teatro Massimo and Politeama
– The Ballarò Market
– The Cathedral of Palermo
– The Orto Botanico … and much more 😉

Where to stop:
– Have a coffe at one of the several bars of Via ippolito Pindemonte, a shaded pedestrian street
– Antica Friggitoria San Francesco: an historic restaurant with real typical food. I suggest to get some food at the ground level and taste it sitting in the nearby plaza.

4- Scopello: only 40 minutes by car from Palermo, you will reach the Riserva Naturale dello Zingaro and Scopello. Just few kms after Scopello town, you will arrive at the historic Baglio with the Tonnara, both recently restorated. It is a small bay charaterized by wonderful Faraglioni and clear blue water

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Tonnara di Scopello

What to do:
Although you have to pay to access the area (3.5€/adult), I really suggest you to visit the Tonnara. Visitors can enjoy the beautiful sea and get a sunbath on the small peer. The location is really special and you could also decide to stop for the night, as there is a very nice B&B located in the historical buildings. (www.tonnaradiscopello.com)

Where to eat:
– Restaurant del Golfo at Castellammare del Golfo (15 minutes by car going back to Palermo): great sea food, especially the shrimp tartare.
– There are some good restaurants in Scopello town, up on the hill, but in April they where still closed. I suggest to visit anyway the small Borgo and to enjoy a coffe or an ice-cream in the tiny main plaza

5- Segesta: a wonderful archeologic site in a special scenario, just 1 hour by car from Palermo.

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Segesta's Temple
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Segesta's Theater

What to do:
– I really suggest to visit the beautiful Temple and the Theater. The conservation level is very high and the view is absolutely amazing. Also 2G really enjoyed the visit 😉

The entrance to both the monuments costs 7€/adult.
The acces to the Temple is easy, while reaching the Theatre is quite hard. Hopefully there is a bus service that takes you up to the Theatre for 1.5 €/adult.

6- Trapani: a very beautiful city, not only the place where to catch a ferry boat for the fantastic Egadi Islands

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Trapani's City Center
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The historic wall promenade

What to do:
– Walk around the pedestrian city center with his narrow streets, admire beautiful buildings and churches, and step on the historic walls facing the sea.

Where to eat:
– There are severals restaurants in the city center. We tried the Ristorante Gusto, Via Badia Nuova: very good especially the sword fish rolls!

7- Erice: a village on the top of the mountain that offer a wonderful 360° view of Trapani and the Egadi Island.
Unfortunately it was too cloudy and windy to get the cableway and go up there…we will come back for sure!

Esperienza di Pancia (Summary):

Travel score: 8/10
Very relaxing and very good food 😉

Travelling with children: 8/10
We have lived in an apartment close to Mondello for the all vacation. We visited some places at a short distance in daily trips mainly to the beach and the weather was mostly warm.
Ferry Boat: we came back by GNV “La Superba” boat: the night was really peaceful, the day was long but good. I really suggest the external cabin, which is big enough to place the crib and to spend some time during the day.

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Our "children friendly" cabin 😉

GNV provides (complimentary upon request at the reception) bed safety bars for all cabins and cribs only for Family Suites. We brought our own crib, the very light and compact BabyBjorn Travel Bed.
There is also a children play room with entertainment, unfortunately only during summer period.
The food on board is ok. We had breakfast at the bar and lunch at the self-service, which was not so bad, but a bit overcrowded. If you want to eat at the a-la-carte restaurant, I kindly suggest to make a reservation in advance, because it is always fully booked.

At the end we are tired, like all parents travelling with children, but really happy! 😉

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